2023 has been another year packed full of interesting heritage projects for BB Heritage Studio – from railways to rural idylls and lots in between! 

I’m really pleased to be back immersed in railway heritage again helping Network Rail on two major railway projects in Manchester, as well as advising on Dock Branch Park in Birkenhead for the local authority and the next phase of the Castlefield Viaduct ‘sky garden’ in Manchester for the National Trust. 

Peterson’s Smokehouse in Grimsby is progressing well on site with lots of hard work from the wider team led by Fleet Architects. 

Touchstones Art Gallery in Rochdale has just been granted planning & listed building consent and I’m looking forward to supporting lead architects Architectural Emporium and the team on this further next year. 

It’s been good to see things move further forward for Granby Four Streets CLT through Liverpool City Council’s Community Led Housing Programme. 

And also to be helping Clayton Hall again with their fascinating moated site, including working with the MSA Live students to envisage an amazing future for this exceptional heritage asset.   

The most fascinating project of 2023 has to be Ron’s Place (https://ronsplace.co.uk/).  Due to an amazing donation from Tamsin Wimhurst from the Muller Wimhurst Trust, Wirral Arts and Culture CLT were able to acquire this inspirational site of ‘outsider art’ in March this year.  Ron Gittins was a local Birkenhead man who rented his ground floor flat in Prenton and transformed it into a classical ‘villa’.  The walls, ceilings and floors are covered with paintings and the fireplaces transformed into huge sculptures.  Ron also sculpted two totems either side of his front door (sadly no longer there), which have inspired this year’s ‘Christmas Card’. I like to think Ron would have been quite taken with having his work drawn alongside the classical orders! It has been a privilege to help the CLT this year to work through the very specific requirements of this unique place.

So there’s lots already waiting to keep me busy next year.  Plus in April 2024 BB Heritage Studio will be celebrating it’s 10th birthday so plans are brewing to mark that milestone.

Have a very restful break everyone.          

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